For the record, I am an ardent supporter of putting artificial turf on all of the Cobb County High School athletic fields. Based on experience, even if the economics make turf a little more expensive than grass, the benefits of having a safe playing field for all activities (athletic and academic) make putting down the turf a good bet for the schools. Several schools in Cobb County already have turf (McEachern, Harrison, Walton, and Lassiter), either because these schools are situated in wealthier districts or are the beneficiaries of a huge endowment.
Here is where the problem lies. Schools in the Wheeler, Pebblebrook, Osborne, South Cobb etc., districts are not in areas where there is a population that can mobilize money for such projects. It certainly would be easy to argue that the folks in the districts that have turf (and a lot of other things like Jumbotron scoreboards, etc.) just work harder than folks in the other schools. While that argument makes people feel good about themselves, it's not the truth and we all know it.
Through poor planning, caving in to pressure from wealthier areas, and some blatant racial politics; the CCSD has allowed gross inequities to occur regarding both athletic facilities and facilities in general. In the case of Wheeler High School, the issue carries over to general academic facilities.
Over the past 15 years, Walton High has continued to grow, to a point where the student population is now over 2,400. Wheeler, on the other hand, was allowed to shrink to approximately 1,500 students who live in the district. Racial politics played a big role in the CCSD not doing the logical thing, which would be to move the school district east and even out the numbers. Rather, the CCSD installed a Magnet Program at Wheeler which now has approximately 400 students from outside the district in a specialized program (which costs much more per student than normal high school).
New facilities were constructed mainly for these out-of-district students and the remainder of the facilities, including the athletic facilities, were left to the parents to keep held together with duct tape.
The bottom line is that the CCSD has created immense educational and extra-curricular facilities inequities in the school system. Much of this is the result of mismanagement and racial/economic bias. It is also true that in a public school system that is funded by property tax money (and I guarantee that I pay far more than average) a boy or girl that attends Pebblebrook or Wheeler deserves the same opportunities and facilities and the boy or girl at Lassiter or Harrison. The CCSD and the county are obligated to remedy these inequities. Renovating all of the athletic stadiums with field turf, while only remedying a small portion of the problem, would be a good faith start.